Seems a young man in Ohio was recently arrested for a photo posted on Facebook.
The photo showed him holding his 1-year-old daughter and a “scary” gun at the same time.
Allegedly, the baby’s grandmother got wind of the photo and alerted authorities. The local police came and arrested the guy – for child endangerment.
This appears to be the photo. Note that the “scary” gun is (1) not pointed at the child, (2) is pointed away from both child and father, and (3) there’s no finger on the trigger. Frankly, I don’t see any evidence of “endangerment” in the photo. Stupidity, poor judgement, perhaps – but not endangerment.
It gets even better. It turns out the gun in question was a freaking BB-gun.
Yes, that’s right: the cops actually went to a guy’s house and arrested him over a picture of him holding his child and a toy at the same time. Why? Because that “toy” looked like one of those “scary” guns. I wonder if they’d have arrested him if it had been a plastic sword or a hammer? Both of those can be lethal to a small child.
I don’t fault the cops for checking into this once it was reported. And yeah – the guy should have probably put the BB pistol down for the picture.
But an arrest for “child endangerment”? Give me a freaking break. A quick interview and a look at the “scary gun” involved – plus a dose of common sense – was what was called for here. Not an arrest for what was obviously a non-crime.
Normally, we talk about “stupid criminal tricks”. Well, maybe we should file this one under “stupid cop tricks.”
I wonder if any conservative lawyers in Ohio might have time for a bit of pro bono work. Based on the photo and other facts reported so far, IMO it’s at least possible there might be a wrongful arrest suit in there somewhere.
Correction: the original version of this story indicated that the ex-wife was the individual who alerted authorities. In fact, it appears she showed the picture to her mother – the baby’s grandmother – who is the one who actually alerted local authorities.